Anyone who knows me understands that my love of Billy Joel runs deep. I always liked him when I was a kid (my parents didn’t have a lot of music in the home and I made do with what they had — I also love Neil Diamond) and I continued to like him unironically until I was maybe 16 or 17. Then one day I discovered “trying to act cool” and I dropped Joel like Judas dropped Jesus.
I’m not proud of it. I don’t think Judas was in the end either, from what I recall from my high school choir’s rendition of Jesus Christ Superstar.
Then maybe a decade or so ago I started liking him ironically. Singing Piano Man at weddings, that sort of thing. Other acts that snuck back into my life the same way include the aforementioned Jewish Elvis, Toto, and Cold Chisel.
One day I realised that I wasn’t singing “My Life” with a sense of ironic detachment. I just really wanted people to go ahead with their own lives and leave me alone.
I never said I was a victim of circumstance.
A little over a year ago I started writing out Billy Joel lyrics, again I thought ironically. But the truth is that I realised that I simply enjoyed seeing them hand-written. There’s no more to it than that.
Yes. This is my art. Please don’t sue me, Mr Joel.
Since you’re here, check out Vulture’s ranking of every Billy Joel song ever. It’s wrong, but it’s fun.